Naxos is a Greek island in the South Aegean Sea, as well as the largest island in the Cyclades. Its vast territory offers its visitors a thousand-year history, ancient ruins, crystal clear watering, long beaches, but at the same time, visiting Naxos also means enjoying a variety of culinary choices. So if you decide to leave for a holiday in one of the beautiful Greek islands and you want to delight your palate too, my advice is to take advantage of the island of Naxos and discover the traditional flavours of the place…
Here are the 5 typical local dishes that you can not miss, especially in the summer season: fresh and light dishes (almost all...) that will delight you on the hottest days of your Greek summer.
The pita, or as one would say in the traditional Greek language pitta, is the classic side dish that is served for lunch and dinner or whenever possible. Its origins can be traced back to Mesopotamia where a dough was prepared that was shaped like a low disc and pressed with a pocket to accommodate the most varied fillings. The most famous recipe, internationally, is the Pita gyros, a dish made up of strips of pork inundated with the traditional tzatziki sauce, salad, tomato, onion and French fries.
Although they are a traditional Greek dish, kolokithokeftedes originate in a country other than Greece and in fact the recipe for these meatballs originates in Turkey. The ingredients with which they are prepared, however, are the traditional ones of the Hellenic land: few, fresh and tasty. Accompanied by the famous tzatziki sauce, the meatballs rigorously fried and composed of feta cheese and zucchini, with the addition of parsley, mint and dill are excellent both as an appetiser and as a second course. In short, a very difficult name for a delicious dish.
The name “souvlaki” has a somewhat controversial origin and we don’t know much about its origin… Nevertheless, it is perhaps the most famous dish in Greece and Naxos, known and appreciated probably because of its simplicity. It is precisely in its simplicity that hides the accuracy with which this dish is prepared: pork, chicken or lamb, are left to marinate in oil, lemon and spices and then stuck with skewers. They are cooked on charcoal and in a moment you will find yourself in the dish one of the most popular foods of all Greece.
Those who have been lucky enough to taste moussaka know that it is an unmissable dish of the Greek tradition although it is not at all “light” and therefore it is recommended for dinner after a long day at sea. Its origins are uncertain but there is no doubt that the name comes from Turkish and is, in turn, a transportation of an Arabic word. It is a fried, baked, made with layers of aubergines and potatoes, béchamel au gratin and minced meat sauce. Some legends circulating on the island of Naxos, say that moussaka is an extremely aphrodisiac dish… So, what better reason to try it?
The Greek salad is the undisputed queen of the Hellenic tradition and in its original language Choriatiki literally means “peasant”. In fact, its origins are peasant and this was the meal that the workers in the countryside used to eat. Ripe tomatoes cut into large slices, cucumbers, green peppers, red onion, black olives and feta in abundance, but of course there is also vinegar, oil and lemon juice. As in all Greek recipes, there are many variations and no matter what the “original” is, the important thing is to taste at least once, maybe by the sea, this extraordinary nutritious, fresh and tasty dish.
These I have listed are without a doubt the 5 favourite dishes of tourists from all over the world but also of the inhabitants of Naxos and all over Greece.
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